MmM..my Cookin..

Freezer advice..

Good mornin! I hope your all ready, I’m off for the day and I have all my house work and cookin caught up, I am gonna flood my blog! To start off I have some simple freezer tips I would like to share with ya’ll. First off it is very important to properly cool your cooked food to 34-40 F before freezin and make sure you only take 4 hrs. to cool to this temp any longer and bacteria can and will start.

To keep your freezer organized you can take a few cheap easy steps to keep your head from spinnin. The first step to take would be labelin your packages. You could use a sharpie on a piece of scotch tape to write on each item what it is, when it expires, and even heatin instructions. Next step would be keepin an inventory list to simply keep track of items you have on hand that way when its time to grocery shop you wont have to root thru the freezer/s. To save space you can lay your freezer bags flat or punch your ground meat flat. Once they freeze you can stand them up or move where wanted. Last step I take is labelin a bin ( or plastic grocery bags ) and puttin all the same items in it so you can pull the whole thing out and not one thing at a time.

Flash freezin- To lay food out evenly in one layer without touchin on a cookie sheet and freeze. After you freeze for about 2 hrs the food can hold its form and can be placed in a larger bag without the food freezin together. Say for instance you go and pick fresh blueberries with your kids and you have a lot you would want to wash the blueberries then lay them on a cookies sheet,  after you gently press to dry with a paper towel, in one layer without touchin too much, freeze them for 2 hrs than you can transfer them into a freezer bag. When you want to use some blueberries simple scoop out how much you will need, no need to defrost them all. And defrostin is as simple as runnin them under cool water for about 5 mins.

Things I would not freeze would include any water based produce like lettuce, kale, romaine, etc. Any fried foods would never heat back up like the original day it was cooked. Shelled eggs is a no go unless you want to clean up eggs from your freezer walls lol. Most spices get bitter after bein froze like garlic, pepper, herbs, etc. If needed to be frozen just lay in the bottom of ice tray cube and cover with olive oil, pop one cube out as needed for cookin. Block cheese will crumble after bein frozen.

Things I would freeze includes fruits like grapes, sliced bananas, etc. Also soups, precooked meals, flour, leftover buttermilk, breads, etc. Pretty much you can get away with freezin the items not to be froze by cookin them into a dish that will be froze later, just not in its original state.

Your imagination is the limit! Don’t get carried away and freeze everythin, be practical if your family didn’t enjoy the new recipe you just tried chances are if you freeze it and try to feed them it again a month later..they still wont like it! Depenin on what your freezin most food will stay good in the freezer any where from 4-6 months. That’s why labelin is important. Also dependin on how well you did at wrappin the frozen food depends on how much freezer burn will ruin your food, so be careful not to let too much air in.

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Life blogs, MmM..my Cookin..

Some basic advice for everyday cookin..

Hello, how is everyone? I have been very busy but good. Between workin doubles, strength trainin at the gym, and everyday life my days off just can’t seem to come fast enough. Soo today’s post is goin to be some hints, advice and general food safety.

If if your anythin like me you will start off processing what your about to accomplish in your head about a week in advance. A few days into thinkin I start to google and seek my advice. Then it migrates to paper. My notes could be a list, a web (think back to elementary school where the subject is in the middle of your paper in a circle with lines going away to other smaller circles like a sun with the subtopics, mine even go further to include some recipe hints) or even saved Google searches. Once I figure out what I am going to be doin I will gather another list with items I need to get to finish my project. I try to space out my deadlines due to work and life. For instance: I went meat sale shopping Friday, seasoned my whole chicken Saturday, went grocery shopping today while my chicken cooked slowly. Tomorrow I will pick the chicken and season the other meat I plan to start cooking Tuesday with the intentions of cooking all day Wednesday (until it’s gym time) and portionin everythin Thursday into Friday.

Cleanin…yes unfortunately you have to clean. But there are a few tricks to make it easier! To start off you will want to make sure there are no dirty dishes to start off with. Next grab your Clorox spray and goto town. Clean the sinks, counters, table, and all other surfaces your food and cookin utensils will come into contact with. Keep the dish strainer on the counter with a small amount of hot water in the sink with a high concentrate of dish soap. Not so hot your burnin your hands, but hot enough to dry the dishes quickly and safely put your hands in. Wash the dishes as you go! When ever you get a break to wash them..do it. Spray your counters when you move on, don’t wait! When needed add more hot water to freshen the sink but PLEASE make sure to change the water as needed.

Cross contamination happens when raw items get mixed and create a bacteria. You should not cut your steak where you just cut your chicken or even use the same knife without sanitizing your work area and tools includin your hands. No you should not use the bloody knife you just used to cut your pernil to cut your child’s apple with.

F.I.F.O. – First In First Out..rotate your stock. If you got 2 loaves of bread and not sure if you will start the second in time..pop it into the freezer..stop the aging process until needed. Put the new gallon of milk into the back of the fridge ( in case no one could see the half empty one beside it ;-P ) Yes cans count too!

Properly coolin food is a very important step In food preparation. If not done properly it could create a bacteria leadin to sickness of loved ones. You should spread food out flat on a cookie sheet or use an ice bath ( fill sink with ice water and dip bottom of bowl with the hot food in it try to mix while waitin).

To to defrost food you should plan ahead and pull frozen meats at least one day in advance. If you got home early from work that day and decide to prepare a dinner you were not ready for simple run the frozen meat in its package under runnin cold water. The process should only take a few minutes depending on the amount of meat, keep rotatin if it’s that big.

Last but but not least…stay organized! Weather that means you have to keep and inventory list of items you have on hand (we use a chalk board) or you portion your food to help food waste. Don’t let food get the best of you!

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